Over at USA Today Happily Ever After I’m interviewing author Rachel Bach for my SciFi Encounters column. Her Paradox Series is one of the best trilogies of science fiction, complete with romance and a kickASS heroine, that I’ve read in a long time. Hop on over and peruse the interview!
One thing Rachel and I discovered we share is an admiration for the character of Ellen Ripley in the movies Alien and Aliens. Devi the heroine in the Paradox Series has been raised to be a warrior since childhood, versus Ripley who did need to be shown how to use
the pulse rifle but then rock-and-rolls with it for the rest of the movie. I think the two women
would get along fine if they ever sat down for a chat. Ripley had to make do with the futuristic Caterpillar power loader to fight the alien queen and Devi has a much more sophisticated suit to wear into her battles.
There’s another key female character in Paradox, named Maat, which Rachel explained is keying off the goddess Ma’at of Ancient Egypt. In my paranormal novel series Gods of Egypt I feature Ma’at fairly often. She was responsible for keeping the Universe and the world in harmony, preventing chaos. She embodied all the good qualities of truth, law, justice, law and morality. Some Egyptian traditions hold that she was present at the judging of a person’s heart after death, with her red feather of Truth on the golden scales, deciding if the deceased’s ka or soul was worthy to proceed into the Afterlife. You’ll have to read the interview to see how Rachel took the Ma’at concept and applied it to her character Maat.
I think both Ripley and Devi would pass goddess Ma’at’s test, with their strong sense of responsibility and their attempts to do what they believe is the right thing. Ripley and Devi don’t let anything deter them from what they believe is their duty.
Another strong female heroine would be Leeloo from the movie “Fifth Element,” although she has no suit of armor and is the perfect being, as we get told over and over BUT she’s also a woman with a mission and nothing – not even Bruce Willis at his scruffy best – can sidetrack her from saving the universe. (Although she does need a bit of a pep talk but I always think she’s testing Bruce’s Korben Dallas character at the end there. Oh, sort of like Ma’at weighed the heart? I can find parallels in anything LOL!)
I happen to like the 2010 Science fiction movie “Predators”. I love the character of Isabelle, a tough as nails sniper, played by Alice Braga. She’s not backing down from any challenge and she’s deadly-with-a-heart. “Fear is Reborn” is the movie’s tagline, but not in this character!
Leona the LA police detective, as portrayed by Maria Conchita Alonso in the 1990 “Predator 2” , is another absolute woman warrior in the Predator franchise…
Not all these ladies got to have full blown romance in their stories (although Devi sure does in Rachel’s novel!)
So who’s your favorite gutsy SF&F heroine?